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Question and Answer Tracking Details

0926 - CASINO ALLEGATIONS

Greenwich, Alex to the Minister for Customer Service
  1. Considering the allegations of criminal gang links, money laundering, sex trafficking and visa schemes connected with Crown Casio:
    1. What liaison has the Government carried out with Commonwealth Government agencies on these matters?
    2. What investigation and review of licensing conditions and links with criminal gangs has the Government carried out or initiated to date?
    3. What probity investigation will the Government carry out on casino licence holders?
    4. What measures does the Government use to prevent undue influence from gaming industry interests?
  2. What action will the Government take to ensure New South Wales casinos operate ethically and within the law?
  3. What plans does the Government have to increase oversight and strengthen probity requirements for casinos in New South Wales?
Answer -

(1) Liquor & Gaming NSW (L&GNSW) works with law enforcement agencies and has ongoing engagement with AUSTRAC and police as co-regulators at strategic, operational and policy levels to ensure that New South Wales casinos remain free of criminal influence and exploitation, including junket operations. This engagement supports L&GNSW's ongoing oversight of casino operations through the comprehensive casino regulatory framework.

On 8 August 2019, the Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority announced that it will be conducting an inquiry under section 143 of the Casino Control Act 1992 (the Act) into ongoing suitability issues relating to recent media reports about allegations of misconduct at Crown Melbourne.

The Authority has appointed the Honourable Patricia Bergin SC to conduct the inquiry. Ms Naomi Sharp SC and Mr Scott Aspinall will be appointed as counsel assisting the inquiry.

The inquiry will also consider the proposed sale of shares in Crown Resorts from James Packer's CPH Crown Holdings Pty Limited to Lawrence Ho's Melco Resorts & Entertainment Limited.

The Terms of Reference and a timetable for public submissions will be published by the Authority shortly and announcements will be made later regarding the processes of the inquiry, including how submissions can be made.

(2) The Government has put in place a comprehensive set of controls to ensure that casino operations:

  • remain free from criminal influence and exploitation
  • continue to be conducted honestly, and
  • are run in a way that contains and controls the potential for a casino to cause harm to the public interest, and to individuals and families.

This controls include the Casino Control Act 1992, the Casino Control Regulation 2010 (with the Casino Control Regulation 2019 due to commence from 1 September), a set of internal controls for each casino operator that need to be approved by the Authority, and the use of disciplinary actions where required.

(3) The Government will consider any findings made by the Authority following its inquiry.

Question asked on 1 August 2019 (session 57-1) and printed in Questions & Answers Paper No. 16
Answer received on 5 September 2019 and printed in Questions & Answers Paper No. 23